Biting the Hand That Feeds
Capitalist elites attack what saved them: government.
By DAVID MOBERG
Not surprisingly, in America, deficit hounds are baying that federal budgets threaten to turn the United States into Greece, and they are gearing up for attacks on Social Security, Medicare and other social programs.
Early last year, even free market fundamentalists confessed that capitalism was in crisis. A Newsweek cover trumpeted, “We are all socialists now.” Alas, the headline was mistaken: Government responses to the crisis did little to democratize economic power or challenge narrow market values, as socialism implies. The U.S. government had simply bailed out big finance with remarkably lenient conditions (and, even now, inadequate regulation) and had passed a large—but still insufficient—package of spending initiatives and tax cuts to keep the economy from collapsing.
This government intervention saved capitalism from itself. So one might expect some humility and gratitude for the public sector from the titans of finance. You would be wrong. Instead, those same financial elites, from Europe to the United States, now oppose deficit spending to stimulate the global economy—rejecting the thinking of British economist John Maynard Keynes, let alone Marx. more